Hi-- I'll be sailing on the Star Princess on 12/22/08. In 14 days of cruise, plus extra time in Rio before sailing, I imagine I'll need to do some laundry (or have it done).
Are the prices for laundry service on board too outrageous? I also noticed that Princess has self service launderettes (although I'd rather not spend my vacation time doing laundry Should I bring a roll of quarters for this, or do they use tokens of some kind you can buy? Are they generally very crowded? Can you put your clothes in and leave, or do you feel like you need to stay close by?
On some land-based tours I've been on, I've been able to find laundry service business in tourist areas (usually priced by the kilo) where you could drop things off, and then pick them up in a few hours washed and folded, for what seemed like an incredibly low price (at least by US standards). Do you know if there are any businesses like this in the port areas of BA, Stanley, Ushuaia or Punta Arenas?
I did cruise the Star in 2003 (it's a great ship) I just can't remember about the laundry. The memory is the first to go. So I did a search and this is what I found. They do have self service launderettes so bring quarters. We took the laundry soap travel packets, and my hubby found a fold up laundry basket this made it much easier. http://www.princess.com/learn/answer...e/services.jsp
Laundry and Dry Cleaning
Take advantage of our onboard laundry service for a nominal fee. All laundry is returned within 48 hours, or on the same day with our express service. We also offer dry cleaning and self-service coin-operated launderettes.
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If you do decide to do the self-service laundry on board, it's very convenient to bring a roll of quarters. The change machines sometimes do not work. I don't remember the exact price, but never used more than a full roll of quarters, and I usually do 2-3 loads per 7 day cruise (I like to pack lite). I also bring a mesh laundry bag with handles. It weighs almost nothing and is very handy.
You do not need to sit there the entire time it's on, but be sure to watch the time and get your stuff out so others can use the machines as they become available. Best time is early am, or on a port day. Busiest times are formal nights and sea days and the last full day of the cruise.
There is usually a laundrette on each passenger deck. They alternate forward and aft per deck. If the one on your deck is at the opposite end of the ship from your cabin, try the one a deck above or below.
I've never used the ships laundry service, due to allergies to many kinds of soaps. I have to bring my own.